Well planned play is the key way children learn with enjoyment and challenge during the early years. This happens in different situations, different groups, sometimes quietly or sometimes noisily, together or alone, outside and inside. In line with government guidelines, our planning and assessment of activities and experiences are based on the Early Years Foundation Stage framework, drawn up by the Department of Education (to read the document online, click here) which “sets the standards that all early years providers must meet to ensure that all children learn and develop well and are kept healthy and safe”. (DfE 2014). Our practice is informed by the principles that:
every child is a unique and competent learner;
positive relationships are important and help children to be strong and independent;
the learning environment plays a key role in supporting and extending learning;
children develop and learn in different ways, at different rates and that all learning and development are equally important.
At Ethelred children have the freedom and time to:
feel good about their own learning
imagine and pretend
take risks and make mistakes
practice and develop approaches, ideas and skills
develop self-confidence and independence
take responsibility, make decisions and choices
express their feelings
be listened to
make sense of the world around them
make a mess (and later tidy up!)
communicate in different ways
persevere and try again
think and concentrate
follow their interests over an extended period of time
There are 5 local authority nursery schools in Lambeth and approximately 40 in London. As in primary schools, nursery schools are led by qualified headteachers and teachers working with other qualified early years’ educators and teaching assistants. We are specialists in early education and development for children from birth to 5 years old, working in collaboration with parents and other professionals.
To ensure the best opportunities for all children we work very closely with parents, other professionals and organisations who support families with young children, for example health visitors, speech and language therapists, training organisations and charities such as Clapham Relief Fund and Foodbank.